Observe and interact
"Beauty is in the eyes of the one who looks"
Good design is based on a free and harmonious relationship between nature and people, and in which careful observation and interaction provide inspiration, the repertoire of solutions and geometric patterns. It is not something that can be developed in isolation. On the contrary, it is the result of a continuous and reciprocal interaction with the subject.
Permaculture uses these conditions to consciously and continuously evolve agrarian systems and habitat that can meet the needs of people throughout the energy downhill.
For peoples of hunter-gatherers and agrarian societies with low population density, nature provided for all material needs, human activity being mainly dedicated to harvesting. In the more densely populated preindustrial societies, agricultural productivity depended on large and continuous inputs of human labor.
As for the industrial society, it requires large and continuous inputs of fossil energy to produce food and other goods and services. Permaculture designers rely primarily on careful observation and interaction to make more effective use of human capabilities and to reduce dependence on non-renewable energy and high technology.
In more conservative and socially connected agrarian communities, the ability of some individuals to step back, observe and interpret both traditional and modern land use methods is a strong asset for developing new and more appropriate systems. . A radical change in a community is always more difficult for many reasons, so that developed models
Locally and using some of the best ecological design methods, whether traditional or modern, is more likely to succeed than a preconceived system imposed from the outside. In addition, the diversity of these local models will naturally provide innovative elements for cross-fertilization of similar innovations in other places.
This principle aims essentially at facilitating the emergence of a long-term, independent and even heretical way of thinking, which is essential for designing new solutions, rather than encouraging the adoption and replication of proven solutions. In the past, it was the academic and urban milieus of the affluent society that tolerated, even encouraged, this way of thinking, while traditional agrarian cultures rejected it fiercely. At the ultimate stages of the chaos of the postmodern abundance society, systems of knowledge dominance are less obvious, so that this independent and more systemic thinking is more likely to spread widely at all levels of the social and geographical hierarchy. . In such a context, labels and behaviors can not be relied upon as signs of competence and value in evaluating potential design solutions. That's why, at any level, we need to rely more and more on our ability to observe and interact sensitively to find the best way forward.